Aim: Nimesulide, a preferential COX-2 inhibitor has 20 times more selectivity towards COX-2 than that of COX-1. COX-2 selective inhibitors cause frequent nephrotoxicity and hepatotoxicity following their usage. This proposes a physiological role of COX-2 in kidney and liver. Not much attention has been focused on the role of COX-2 with respect to reproduction especially in male reproduction, and the available information is scanty.
Aims and Objectives: The present study aims to investigate the adverse effects of nimesulide in the vas deferens thereby indirectly assess the role of COX-2 in male reproductive tract.
Material and Methods: Nimesulide was administered orally and the animals were maintained for different time periods prior to sacrifice.
Results: The vas deferens of nimesulide treated mice showed extensive histopathological changes such as vacoulation and exfoliation of cells in the epithelial layer.
Conclusion: Nimesulide administration leads to cytotoxic effects suggestive of apoptosis in the vas deferens of mice.
Nimesulide; Vas deferens; COX-2; Mice
Marfan syndrome is an autosomal dominant systemic disorder of the connective tissue. Children affected by the Marfan syndrome carry a mutation in one of their two copies of the gene that encodes the connective tissue protein fibrillin-1. Marfan syndrome affects most organs and tissues, especially the skeleton, lungs, eyes, heart, and the large blood vessel that distributes blood from the heart to the rest of the body. A case report of Marfan syndrome has been reported with oral features. The dental problems of the child were treated under general anesthesia and a one-month review showed intact stainless steel crowns' restorations and no signs of secondary caries.
Virus-infected plants accumulate abundant, 21–24 nucleotide viral siRNAs which are generated by the evolutionary conserved RNA interference (RNAi) machinery that regulates gene expression and defends against invasive nucleic acids. Here we show that, similar to RNA viruses, the entire genome sequences of DNA viruses are densely covered with siRNAs in both sense and antisense orientations. This implies pervasive transcription of both coding and non-coding viral DNA in the nucleus, which generates double-stranded RNA precursors of viral siRNAs. Consistent with our finding and hypothesis, we demonstrate that the complete genomes of DNA viruses from Caulimoviridae and Geminiviridae families can be reconstructed by deep sequencing and de novo assembly of viral siRNAs using bioinformatics tools. Furthermore, we prove that this ‘siRNA omics’ approach can be used for reliable identification of the consensus master genome and its microvariants in viral quasispecies. Finally, we utilized this approach to reconstruct an emerging DNA virus and two viroids associated with economically-important red blotch disease of grapevine, and to rapidly generate a biologically-active clone representing the wild type master genome of Oilseed rape mosaic virus. Our findings show that deep siRNA sequencing allows for de novo reconstruction of any DNA or RNA virus genome and its microvariants, making it suitable for universal characterization of evolving viral quasispecies as well as for studying the mechanisms of siRNA biogenesis and RNAi-based antiviral defense.
The prevalence of diarrheagenic Escherichia coli (DEC) in children under 5 years was studied in children with diarrhea and controls in South India. Four polymerase chain reaction (PCR) “schemes” were used to detect genes of the 6 pathotypes of DEC. In 394 children with diarrhea, 203 (52%) DEC infections were found. Among the 198 controls, 126 (63%) DEC infections were found. Enteroaggregative E. coli was the most common pathotype by multiplex PCR both in cases (58, 14.7%) and controls (47, 23.7%), followed by enteropathogenic E. coli seen in 10% cases and 8% of controls. Enterotoxigenic E. coli (ETEC), enterohemorrhagic E. coli (EHEC), enteroinvasive E. coli (EIEC), and diffusely adherent E. coli (DAEC) were found in 4.1%, 2.0%, 1.0%, and 0.5% of cases, respectively. ETEC was found in 2.5% of controls, but EHEC, EIEC, and DAEC were not detected. Overall, no single assay worked well, but by discounting genes with a pathogenicity index of less than 1, it was possible to use the PCR assays to identify DEC in 75/394 (19%) cases and 12/198 (6.1%) controls, while mixed infection could be identified in 8/394 (2%) cases and 2/198 (1%) controls.
Diarrheagenic E. coli; Multiplex PCR; Virulence genes; Adherence assays
Chronic abdominal pain; Pancreatic calcification; Tropical calcific pancreatitis; Diabetes mellitus; Pancreatic Diabetes; FCPD; fibrocalculous pancreatic diabetes
Channels, pumps, receptors, cyclases and other membrane proteins modulate the motility and sensory function of cilia, but these proteins are generally under-represented in proteomic analyses of cilia. Studies of these ciliary membrane proteins would benefit from a protocol to greatly enrich for integral and lipidated membrane proteins. We used LC-MS/MS to compare the proteomes of unfractionated cilia (C), the ciliary membrane (CM) and the ciliary membrane in the detergent phase (DP) of Triton X-114 phase separation. 55% of the proteins in DP were membrane proteins (i.e. predicted transmembrane or membrane-associated through lipid modifications) and 31% were transmembrane. This is to be compared to 23% membrane proteins with 9% transmembrane in CM and 9% membrane proteins with 3% transmembrane in C. 78% of the transmembrane proteins in the DP were found uniquely in DP, and not in C or CM. There were ion channels, cyclases, plasma membrane pumps, Ca2+ dependent protein kinases, and Rab GTPases involved in the signal transduction in DP that were not identified in the other C and CM preparations. Of 267 proteins unique to the DP, 147 were novel, i.e. not found in other proteomic and genomic studies of cilia.
Ciliary membrane; transmembrane proteins; lapidated proteins; Triton X-114 phase separation; detergent phase; MS analysis
The first mammalian cell lineage commitment is the formation of the trophectoderm (TE) and the inner cell mass (ICM) lineages during preimplantation development. Proper development of the TE and ICM lineages is dependent upon establishment of specific transcriptional programs. However, the epigenetic mechanisms that functionally contribute to establish TE- and ICM-specific transcriptional programs are poorly understood. Here, we show that proper development of the TE and ICM lineages is coordinated via combinatorial regulation of embryonic ectoderm development (EED) and lysine-specific demethylase 6B (KDM6B). During blastocyst formation, the relative levels of EED and KDM6B expression determine altered polycomb repressor 2 (PRC2) complex recruitment and incorporation of the repressive histone H3 lysine 27 trimethylation (H3K27Me3) mark at the chromatin domains of TE-specific master regulators CDX2 and GATA3, leading to their activation in the TE lineage and repression in the ICM lineage. Furthermore, ectopic gain of EED along with depletion of KDM6B in preimplantation mouse embryos abrogates CDX2 and GATA3 expression in the nascent TE lineage. The loss of CDX2 and GATA3 in the nascent TE lineage results in improper TE development, leading to failure in embryo implantation to the uterus. Our study delineates a novel epigenetic mechanism that orchestrates proper development of the first mammalian cell lineages.
Aim: The aim of the present study was to determine the prevalence of traumatic dental injuries to permanent incisors and explore the association between dental trauma and overweight in a sample of school children residing in an urban area. Our hypothesis was that there was a significant association between overweight and the presence of dental trauma among urban children.
Material and Methods: This cross–sectional survey included 858 school children aged 10-12 years, of both sexes, randomly selected from 12 schools in urban Bangalore, India. The dental examination for traumatic injuries included only maxillary and mandibular permanent incisors. Anthropometric data were collected and Body Mass Index (BMI) was calculated (weight in kg/(height in meters)2.
Results: The prevalence of Traumatic Dental Injuries (TDI) was 15.04% and boys experienced more traumatic injuries than girls, but the difference was not statistically significant (p>0.05). OW boys sustained more TDI than OW girls and the association between dental trauma and OW was statistically significant (p<0.05; OR=3.85; 95% CI=2.62-5.24).
Conclusion: Overweight could be considered a significant risk factor for the occurrence of TDI to permanent incisors in Indian school children residing in urban areas.
Dental trauma; Overweight; Body mass index; Permanent incisors; Prevalence; Childhood
This study aims to assess the nanotribology research output at global level using scientometric tools. The SCOPUS database was used to retrieve records related to the nanotribology research for the period 1996–2010. Publications were counted on a fractional basis. The level of collaboration and its citation impact were examined. The performance of the most productive countries, institutes and most preferred journals is assessed. Various visualization tools such as the Sci2 tool and Ucinet were employed. The USA ranked top in terms of number of publications, citations per paper and h-index, while Switzerland published a higher percentage of international collaborative papers. The most productive institution was Tsinghua University followed by Ohio State University and Lanzhou Institute of Chemical Physics, CAS. The most preferred journals were Tribology Letters, Wear and Journal of Japanese Society of Tribologists. The result of author keywords analysis reveals that Molecular Dynamics, MEMS, Hard Disk and Diamond like Carbon are major research topics.
Macrobrachium rosenbergii nodavirus along with a satellite virus, extra small virus (XSV) causes white tail disease (WTD) in the giant freshwater prawn M. rosenbergii. Infected M. rosenbergii postlarvae were collected from a hatchery in Kakinada, Andhra Pradesh. The gene coding the capsid protein of XSV was cloned in a bacterial expression vector pRSET A and the recombinant protein was expressed in Escherichia coli BL21(DE3)pLysS cells. The recombinant protein was purified by Nickel affinity chromatography. Polyclonal antibodies were produced in mice against the recombinant protein and the antibodies reacted specifically with the recombinant protein and XSV in WTD-infected tissues. This is the first report of detection of XSV using antibodies against recombinant capsid protein.
Macrobrachium rosenbergii; White tail disease; XSV; Capsid protein; Polyclonal antibodies
To investigate radiation dose to testes delivered by radiolabeled anti-CD20 antibody and its effects on male sex hormone levels.
Testicular uptake and retention of 131I tositumomab were measured and testicular absorbed doses were calculated for 67 male patients (54 ± 11 years old) with non-Hodgkin lymphoma who underwent myeloablative radioimmunotherapy (RIT) using 131I-tositumomab. Time-activity curves for the major organs, testes, and whole body were generated from planar imaging. In a subset of patients, male sex hormones were measured before and one year after the therapy.
Absorbed dose to testes showed considerable variability (range = 4.4 to 70.2 Gy). Pre-therapy levels of total testosterone were below the lower limit of the reference range, and post-therapy evaluation demonstrated further reduction (4.6 ± 1.8 nmol/L (pre-RIT) vs. 3.8 ± 2.9 nmol/L (post-RIT), p < 0.05). Patients receiving higher radiation doses to the testes (≥ 25 Gy) showed a greater reduction (4.7 ± 1.6 nmol/L (pre RIT) vs. 3.3 ± 2.7 nmol/L (post-RIT), p < 0.05) than did patients receiving lower doses (< 25 Gy), who showed no significant change in total testosterone levels.
The testicular radiation absorbed dose varied highly among individual patients. Patients receiving higher doses to testes were more likely to show post-RIT suppression of testosterone levels.
131I-tositumomab; follicular lymphoma; radioimmunotherapy; radiation dosimetry; male sex hormones
Epidemiological investigations have shown that overcoming the risk of cancer is related to the consumption of green vegetables and fruits. Many compounds from different origins, such as terrestrial plants and marine and microbial sources, have been reported to have therapeutic effects of which marine sources are the most important because the diversity of marine life is more varied than other sources. Fucoxanthin is one important compound with a marine origin and belongs to the group of carotenoids; it can be found in marine brown seaweeds, macroalgae, and diatoms, all of which have remarkable biological properties. Numerous studies have shown that fucoxanthin has considerable medicinal potential and promising applications in human health. In this review, we summarize the anticancer effects of fucoxanthin through several different mechanisms including anti-proliferation, induction of apoptosis, cell cycle arrest and anti-angiogenesis, and its possible role in the treatment of cancer.
cancer; fucoxanthin; apoptosis; cell cycle; signaling
Snakebite represents a significant health issue worldwide, affecting several million people each year with as many as 95,000 deaths. India is considered to be the country most affected, but much remains unknown about snakebite incidence in this country, its socio-economic impact and how snakebite management could be improved.
We conducted a study within rural villages in Tamil Nadu, India, which combines a household survey (28,494 people) of snakebite incidence with a more detailed survey of victims in order to understand the health and socio-economic effects of the bite, the treatments obtained and their views about future improvements. Our survey suggests that snakebite incidence is higher than previously reported. 3.9% of those surveyed had suffered from snakebite and the number of deaths corresponds to 0.45% of the population. The socio-economic impact of this is very considerable in terms of the treatment costs and the long-term effects on the health and ability of survivors to work. To reduce this, the victims recommended improvements to the accessibility and affordability of antivenom treatment.
Snakebite has a considerable and disproportionate impact on rural populations, particularly in South Asia. This study provides an incentive for researchers and the public to work together to reduce the incidence and improve the outcomes for snake bite victims and their families.
AKT1, a serine/threonine-protein kinase also known as AKT kinase, is involved in the regulation of various signalling downstream pathways including metabolism, cell proliferation, survival, growth, and angiogenesis. The AKT kinases pathway stands among the most important components of cell proliferation mechanism. Several approaches have been implemented to design an efficient drug molecule to target AKT kinases, although the promising results have not been confirmed. In this paper we have documented the detailed molecular insight of AKT kinase protein and proposed a probable doxorubicin based approach in inhibiting miR-21 based cancer cell proliferation. Moreover, the inhibition of miR-21 activation by raising the FOXO3A concentration seems promising in reducing miR-21 mediated cancer activation in cell. Furthermore, the use of next generation sequencing and computational drug design approaches will greatly assist in designing a potent drug molecule against the associated cancer cases.
Dried blood spots (DBS) technology has been introduced as a microsampling alternative to traditional plasma or serum sampling for pharmacokinetics or toxicokinetics evaluation. The application of DBS has been established for many small molecule drugs at discovery, nonclinical, and clinical stages. However, the application of DBS for large molecule therapeutics development is not yet well-established. This article describes the method validation of a ligand binding assay (LBA) for DBS sampling of a therapeutic monoclonal antibody—AMG 162 (Denosumab). The original serum LBA was modified for the DBS method. A fit-for-purpose method validation was performed to evaluate accuracy and precision, selectivity, dilutional linearity, and stability. In addition, the parameters relevant to DBS, such as spot volume, extraction recovery, whole blood stability, and hematocrit effects, were evaluated. The validation results demonstrated assay robustness with inter-assay precision of ≤19%, inter-assay accuracy of ≤9%, and total error of ≤24%. Selectivity, extraction recovery, dilutional linearity, and stability were demonstrated. The validation results revealed some limitations of the possible effect of blood hematocrit on therapeutic concentration measurements and the caution required using whole blood for standards and quality controls preparation. This is the first article to describe a thorough method validation of an LBA using DBS for a therapeutic monoclonal antibody. The lessons learned can serve as a model process for future method validation of other LBAs for large molecule therapeutics or biomarkers using the DBS sampling method.
dried blood spot (DBS); large molecule therapeutics; ligand binding assay (LBA); method validation; therapeutic monoclonal antibody
Aim: The Aortic Valve (AV) annular dimension with respect to the Body Surface Area (BSA) of the Indian population is compared against the standard values. Presence of discrepancies can lead to patient prosthesis mismatch during aortic valve replacement surgeries.
Methods: This study was conducted on 406 subjects. AV diameter was examined by using parasternal long axis view, where the imaging plane transects the AV in an anteroposterior direction and its x axis is aligned parallel to the long axis of aorta. Data were statistically analysed with western population.
Results: The AV dimension ranged from 12.2 mm to 21.2 mm in the BSA range of 0.6 to 1.9 m2, showing a linear increase in diameter with increasing BSA. There was an increase of about 2 mm, from 0.61 - 0.7 m2 BSA to 0.71 - 0.8 m2 BSA. A linear increase which ranged from 0.3 to 1 mm was observed for BSA which ranged from 0.81 m2 to 1.2 m2. In the BSA range of 1.21 – 1.3 m2, there was an increase of 1.5 mm. A steady increase which ranged from 0.4–1 mm was observed in the BSA which ranged from 1.31- 1.9 m2.
Conclusions: There is a significant difference between Indian and western population in the aortic dimension, in the body surface ranges of 0.61-0.7, 1.11-1.2, 1.21-1.3, 1.51-1.6, 1.61-1.7, 1.71-1.8 and 1.8-1.9 m2. In the range of 1.21-1.3 m2, the diameter was larger than standard, whereas in all the other ranges, AV diameter was smaller than standard values. BSA, as a good predictor of AV dimension, has also been proved.
Aortic valve annulus; BSA; Indian population
Ras-related C3 botulinum toxin substrate 1 (RAC1) is a plasma membrane-associated small GTPase which cycles between the active GTP-bound and inactive GDP-bound states. There is wide range of evidences indicating its active participation in inducing cancer-associated phenotypes. RAC1 F28L mutation (RACF28L) is a fast recycling mutation which has been implicated in several cancer associated cases. In this work we have performed molecular docking and molecular dynamics simulation (~0.3 μs) to investigate the conformational changes occurring in the mutant protein. The RMSD, RMSF and NHbonds results strongly suggested that the loss of native conformation in the Switch I region in RAC1 mutant protein could be the reason behind its oncogenic transformation. The overall results suggested that the mutant protein attained compact conformation as compared to the native. The major impact of mutation was observed in the Switch I region which might be the crucial reason behind the loss of interaction between the guanine ring and F28 residue.
Generally, limited research is extended in studying stability and applicational properties of silver nanoparticles (Ag NPs) synthesized by adopting ‘green chemistry’ protocol. In this work, we report on the synthesis of stable Ag NPs using plant-derived materials such as leaf extract of Neem (Azadirachta indica) and biopolymer pectin from apple peel. In addition, the applicational properties of Ag NPs such as surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) and antibacterial efficiencies were also investigated. As-synthesized nanoparticles (NPs) were characterized using various instrumentation techniques. Both the plant materials (leaf extract and biopolymer) favored the synthesis of well-defined NPs capped with biomaterials. The NPs were spherical in shape with an average particle size between 14-27 nm. These bio-NPs exhibited colloidal stability in most of the suspended solutions such as water, electrolyte solutions (NaCl; NaNO3), biological solution (bovine serum albumin), and in different pH solutions (pH 7; 9) for a reasonable time period of 120 hrs. Both the bio-NPs were observed to be SERS active through displaying intrinsic SERS signals of the Raman probe molecule (Nile blue A). The NPs were effective against the Escherichia coli bacterium when tested in nutrient broth and agar medium. Scanning and high-resolution transmission electron microscopy (SEM and HRTEM) images confirmed cellular membrane damage of nanoparticle treated E. coli cells. These environmental friendly template Ag NPs can be used as an antimicrobial agent and also for SERS based analytical applications.
Benign occipital seizure syndromes are benign childhood epilepsy syndromes and are mainly of two types, Panayiotopoulos syndrome, an autonomic epilepsy and idiopathic childhood occipital epilepsy of Gastaut (ICOE-G) including the idiopathic photosensitive occipital lobe epilepsy. Although both these types are categorized as occipital seizures, they are distinct in presentation and management. They can also be tricky to diagnose as visual symptoms may not always be the presenting feature and it is also not very easy to elicit visual hallucinations during history taking. These seizures have a good response to treatment; however, there could be atypical evolution and refractoriness to treatment especially with ICOE-G. We describe three children who presented with visual and non-visual symptoms and the electroencephalography (EEG) in all the three cases showed occipital paroxysms. We have emphasized the clues in the clinical history and EEG leading to the diagnosis of these distinct epilepsy syndromes. We have also discussed the natural course of these epilepsy syndromes with some atypical evolution, which clinicians need to be aware of during treatment of these children.
Gastaut; occipital seizures; panayiotopoulos syndrome
Chemotherapy is commonly used in cancer treatments, however only 25% of cancers are responsive and a significant proportion develops resistance. The p53 tumour suppressor is crucial for cancer development and therapy, but has been less amenable to therapeutic applications due to the complexity of its action, reflected in 66,000 papers describing its function. Here we provide a systematic approach to integrate this information by constructing a large-scale logical model of the p53 interactome using extensive database and literature integration. The model contains 206 nodes representing genes or proteins, DNA damage input, apoptosis and cellular senescence outputs, connected by 738 logical interactions. Predictions from in silico knock-outs and steady state model analysis were validated using literature searches and in vitro based experiments. We identify an upregulation of Chk1, ATM and ATR pathways in p53 negative cells and 61 other predictions obtained by knockout tests mimicking mutations. The comparison of model simulations with microarray data demonstrated a significant rate of successful predictions ranging between 52% and 71% depending on the cancer type. Growth factors and receptors FGF2, IGF1R, PDGFRB and TGFA were identified as factors contributing selectively to the control of U2OS osteosarcoma and HCT116 colon cancer cell growth. In summary, we provide the proof of principle that this versatile and predictive model has vast potential for use in cancer treatment by identifying pathways in individual patients that contribute to tumour growth, defining a sub population of “high” responders and identification of shifts in pathways leading to chemotherapy resistance.
The mutualistic symbiont Piriformospora indica exhibits a great potential in agriculture. The interaction between P. indica and Chinese cabbage (Brassica campestris cv. Chinensis) results in growth and biomass promotion of the host plant and in particular in root hair development. The resulting highly bushy root phenotype of colonized Chinese cabbage seedlings differs substantially from reports of other plant species, which prompted the more detailed study of this symbiosis. A large-scale expressed sequence tag (EST) data set was obtained from a double-subtractive EST library, by subtracting the cDNAs of Chinese cabbage root tissue and of P. indica mycelium from those of P. indica-colonized root tissue. The analysis revealed ~700 unique genes rooted in 141 clusters and 559 singles. A total of 66% of the sequences could be annotated in the NCBI GenBank. Genes which are stimulated by P. indica are involved in various types of transport, carbohydrate metabolism, auxin signalling, cell wall metabolism, and root development, including the root hair-forming phosphoinositide phosphatase 4. For 20 key genes, induction by fungal colonization was confirmed kinetically during the interaction by real-time reverse transcription–PCR. Moreover, the auxin concentration increases transiently after exposure of the roots to P. indica. Microscopic analyses demonstrated that the development of the root maturation zone is the major target of P. indica in Chinese cabbage. Taken together, the symbiotic interaction between Chinese cabbage and P. indica is a novel model to study root growth promotion which, in turn, is important for agriculture and plant biotechnology.
Chinese cabbage; growth and biomass promotion; mutualistic symbiosis; Piriformospora indica; root maturation zone; subtractive EST library
Among the viruses infecting penaeid shrimp, monodon-type baculovirus (MBV) otherwise known as Penaeus monodon singly enveloped nuclear polyhedrosis virus (PmSNPV), is one of the widely reported and well described viruses. It is a rod-shaped, enveloped, double-stranded DNA virus, and considered till recently, as the type A baculovirus. Besides MBV, two strains of SNPV are reported—plebejus baculovirus and bennettae baculovirus. MBV was reported to be originated from Taiwan and has wide geographic distribution and is reported to be enzootic in wild penaeids of the Indo-pacific coasts of Asia. The virus also has diverse host-range including a variety of cultured and captured shrimp species and freshwater prawn, Macrobrachium rosenbergii. MBV has been reported in all life stages of P. monodon with late larval, postlarval and young juvenile as the most susceptible stages/ages. However, MBV has not been documented in early larval stages. Although MBV has been reported to be tolerated well by shrimp, the infection has been attributed to decreased productivity. The target organs or tissues of MBV are the hepatopancreatic tubules and duct epithelium of postlarvae, juveniles and adults, and the anterior midgut epithelium of very young postlarvae. The prominent clinical sign of infection is the presence of multiple spherical inclusion bodies in the hepatopancreas and midgut epithelial cells. The major mode of transmission of the virus is horizontal through oral exposure to occlusion bodies, contaminated tissues or fomites. Minor morphometric variation of the virus has been reported among different isolates. The rod-shaped enveloped virus particles range from 265–324 nm in length and 42–77 nm in diameter. Although complete genome sequence of MBV is not available, nucleic acid of MBV is circular, double-stranded DNA with a genome size ranging from 80 to 160 kbp. The virus codes for a 53 kDa major polyhedrin polypeptide and two minor 47 and 49 kDa polypeptides. A variety of diagnostic tools have been reported for this virus including real-time PCR and LAMP-based detection. Taxonomic position is still uncertain and International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses lists MBV as a tentative species named PemoNPV in the genus Nucleopolyhedrovirus. However, according to the latest genomic information on the virus, it has been suggested to create a new group of non-occluded bacilliform viruses called nudiviruses with MBV as one of the members. The aim of the current work is to describe the knowledge on the status, distribution and host-range, pathology, transmission, virus structure and morphogenesis, genomic characteristics, diagnosis and the latest taxonomic position of MBV.
Penaeid shrimp; Viral disease; Monodon baculovirus; MBV
Aspergillus fumigatus has been shown to form biofilms that are associated with adaptive antifungal resistance mechanisms. These include multidrug efflux pumps, heat shock proteins, and extracellular matrix (ECM). ECM is a key structural and protective component of microbial biofilms and in bacteria has been shown to contain extracellular DNA (eDNA). We therefore hypothesized that A. fumigatus biofilms also possess eDNA as part of the ECM, conferring a functional role. Fluorescence microscopy and quantitative PCR analyses demonstrated the presence of eDNA, which was released phase dependently (8 < 12 < 24 < 48 h). Random amplification of polymorphic DNA (RAPD) PCR showed that eDNA was identical to genomic DNA. Biofilm architectural integrity was destabilized by DNase treatment. Biochemical and transcriptional analyses showed that chitinase activity and mRNA levels of chitinase, a marker of autolysis, were significantly upregulated as the biofilm matured and that inhibition of chitinases affected biofilm growth and stability, indicating mechanistically that autolysis was possibly involved. Finally, using checkerboard assays, it was shown that combinational treatment of biofilms with DNase plus amphotericin B and caspofungin significantly improved antifungal susceptibility. Collectively, these data show that eDNA is an important structural component of A. fumigatus ECM that is released through autolysis, which is important for protection from environmental stresses, including antifungal therapy.